Perfume is a lot like music and just like music, there are different types of perfumes for different occasions. Some perfumes are symphonic arias only fit for dramatic evenings, whilst others are throwaway pop songs to enjoy for a time before moving on to the next big craze. Both of these styles have their place and whilst we always long of the heartbreaking beauty of a more operatic fragrance, we also can’t help but love something a bit cheesy every now and then either.
Jean Paul Gaultier’s Scandal, and now his new fragrance Scandal by Night is most definitely catchy pop tunes done in a slightly cheesy way (I mean this as the highest of compliments, of course). They’re fun, frivolous and easy to wear – the kind of thing you’d throw on with a glitzy party dress for a raucous night of karaoke and cocktails. Well, the night is just about to get more wild because Scandal by Night takes the idea of the honeyed gardenia of the original and replaces it with perfumery’s most cheeky, poptastic flower: tuberose. Lord knows that trouble this perfume is going to get us into…
Base: Sandalwood and Tonka Bean
How Does it Smell?
One could be forgiven for thinking that the differences between Scandal and Scandal by Night are somewhat subtle, after all, they both celebrate a similar theme, that of narcotic white flowers dripping in honey. Scandal by Night is definitely fruitier and sweeter than the original, pumping in a flash of neon through a signature, bubblegum-esque tuberose that glows bright pink. The sherbet-like freshness of the original is all but gone, leaving room for a big white bloom that knows how to party.
Scandal’s signature is honey and lots of it. The idea is to see how the sweetness of honey, and a touch of that sour, animalic quality, blends with big white flowers. Seeing as honey is, by extension, a product of flowers, it makes perfect sense that they blend together perfectly. In Scandal by Night, the honey feels richer, deeper and more intense, almost as if it has been forged from the nectar of some dark, night blooming flower. It blends with the tuberose to temper the sweetness but also makes it more luminous.
Further shifts happen in the base, where the original’s signature patchouli is switched out for the warmth of sandalwood and tonka bean. But it’s not just a change in tone, it all feels more gourmand too, with the tonka bean blasting out a cherry-marzipan tune that plays in perfect harmony with that bubblegum tuberose up top. The sandalwood just smoothes everything over, making for a cosy and enveloping signature.
Scandal by Night does the impossible – it manages to be more fun than Scandal, which was pretty fun, to say the least. If Scandal was a night out on the town that ended up falling rather ungracefully out of a taxi then Scandal by Night is a night out on the town that ends up falling rather ungracefully out of one taxi straight into another, because when this fragrance is spritz, the party don’t stop!